The End

Well this is very odd. As I sit here, I have just closed my WIP and said to myself, it is done. The first draft of my novel is finished. Ok, I know it is not ready and that a lot of editing work is still required before I can say that, but still the first draft is the key step. You can’t edit what you haven’t written… right?

Anyway, sitting here, I feel…. nothing. When I have finished writing my previous two novels, there was a definite sense of ‘YAY, I’m done.’ I walked around with a smile on my face, so happy that even the day job couldn’t bring me down. This time however… nothing.

It’s not that I don’t like the novel. Once I have my edits out of the way, I think it will be my strongest piece yet. I had just hoped to feel more satisfaction at a job well done.

I guess it could be because this novel is a standalone product. It has a beginning, middle and end. The previous two novels, are part of my Highway to Hell trilogy, and so don’t end. They are merely setting things up each time for the next installment. There is no air of finality to them. Ok, the individual storylines are rounded out, but in my mind I still know that there is more to come.

This time I don’t have that. I won’t be writing these characters anymore. This is it, the big goodbye. Could it be that I have become so attached to them, that I am merely sad at seeing them leave? They have been a part of my life for several months now, an integral part. Maybe I just hate goodbyes.

How do you feel when you finish that first draft? Elated, sad, or indifferent? I would love to know.

 

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15 thoughts on “The End

  1. Surprised. I always feel surprised. And kind of let down. Twice now I’ve been madly hyped, writing away, knowing the end is near but still thinking there’s more. And then suddenly I write a phrase and I look at it and I just /know/ that those few words are the perfect ending. I could write more but anything that comes after those few, special words would be completely superfluous. And like you I don’t want to let go. -sigh-

    1. Maybe it is a bit of not wanting to let go. God help me when the kids come to fly the nest then haha.
      This story did just that Meeks, I was going strong 2000 words a day, then suddenly on the final chapter I just ran out. I already had the end paragraph written anyway so it came together nicely. Now just to get editing. LOL

      1. There’s a feel to it, isn’t there? That moment when you just /know/ it’s finished.

        I know you’re going to let the first draft sit for a few weeks but it’s worth saying again and again, we all need time to let that immediacy ooze away.I truly was amazed at the difference a few weeks away made to my ability to see possibilities for tightening up the whole story.

        I hate the waiting but it really is the one piece of advice from Stephen King that I accept without argument… now. 😉

  2. I get a feeling of accomplishment followed by boredom. The best way I can explain it is I put so much effort into a project, then when it’s done I feel like I’ve built something great. Boredom sets in a few hours later when I realize I have nothing to write. lol

    1. Boredom, you could be on to something there. I have a lot of ideas floating around, but nothing started yet. I like to keep busy and having nothing to write does make me bored and often irritable. Luckily I have plenty of stuff to edit (short stories) before NaNo starts

      1. True, I’m the same way. I can’t keep still for a second but it takes some effort for me to switch from one mode and into another. I like to tell people I have two hats, the writing one and the editing one. Switching between them takes some effort on my part and combining them has never worked. My attention span isn’t the best when I’m not writing unless it’s someone else’s work I’m editing, proofing, etc. I’ve taken to taking a few days to a week off after I finish to let my mind switch hats. I guess it’s working so far. I haven’t killed anyone or completely lost my mind. lol 🙂

    2. I am the same. I need to edit these short stories, but can’t switch from writing mode. Maybe a couple of days rest to let my mind settle would be a good thing. Besides, I have a list of people I’d like to send to Dexter, so if I snap, at least I’ll have a focus right. LOL

  3. Congratulations on finishing! I always thought finishing a novel (even the first draft) would be that elated feeling, but when I finished my first in May, I had mixed feelings. I felt proud, nervous, emotionally drained and a little empty. Good thing I had to read the full draft and do plenty of revising, so I still haven’t let the story go for any real length of time yet. I imagine that, once the revisions are done, it will be very difficult to let go.

    1. Thank you. I also have to start editing, but I am pretty happy about it. Plus, there was a very definite finality to this book, there will be no sequel, there cannot be sequel, so it really is first time, last time , only time for these characters. I love the premise of the book, and hopefully with editing and some good beta comments I can bring my ideas to life. Thanks for commenting Krystle

  4. I felt a strange sense of loss when I finished the manuscript for my third Redcliffe novel. In fact, I’m still hanging onto it partly out of a sense of not wanting to give it up for evermore… But I soon started on another book so the feeling didn’t last long!

    1. I have a ton of new projects to start, but I really want to try NaNo again this year. I did it 2 years ago and made the 50k, so interested to see what happens this year. Until then I’m editing a new set of short stories.

      I definitely feel more loss and ‘grief’ at the end of this novel compared to the highways. God Help me when I finish it with those guys because they’ve been with me for 5 years or more now.

      Always a pleasure to hear from you Catherine 😀

  5. I always feel relief after the first draft. The ideas are all (mostly) on the screen, and the rest of the work can begin.

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